Rubber seals play a critical role in preventing leaks in all kinds of equipment and machinery. From doors and windows to pumps and valves, rubber seals block the escape of fluids and gases while keeping out dirt and moisture. One versatile style is the T shaped rubber seal strip, which provides reliable sealing and ease of installation.
What Are T Shaped Rubber Seals?
T shaped rubber seals get their name from their cross-sectional shape: a T. The top of the T is the wide sealing surface that compresses against the mating components. The bottom functions as an anchoring leg that fits into a groove or channel. This dual-purpose shape allows the T seal to both block leaks and secure itself firmly in place.
T seals come in standard or custom profiles with a range of leg and flange sizes to suit different slot dimensions. They are commonly molded from silicone, EPDM, Viton®, buna-N, and other rubbers selected for resistance to temperatures, chemicals, and environments.
Benefits of T Shaped Sealing Strips
There are several key reasons T shaped rubber seals are a popular choice across many sealing applications:
- Effective sealing: The broad sealing flange provides a large contact area that compresses tightly when installed to block leakage paths. Just a small amount of compression is needed to actuate the seal.
- Self-retaining: The anchoring leg locks the T seal into its mating slot or groove. This prevents blowout without requiring adhesives or fasteners.
- Flexibility: T seals readily conform to irregular sealing surfaces. The flexible flange can seal gaps up to 0.125 inch or more.
- Reusability: The rubber’s elasticity allows T strips to be reused many times if removed intact. No sealants or gaskets are needed.
- Easy installation: Dropping the T anchor leg into its slot quickly installs the entire seal. Minimal labor is required.
Standard materials: Common rubber compounds like nitrile and silicone are available. Custom compounds can be molded for special chemical or temperature needs.
Applications for T Shaped Sealing Strips
Here are some of the many uses for T shaped rubber seals:
- Equipment housings – T strips seal covers, access plates, and doors on machinery. They prevent leakage of lubricants and contaminant ingress.
- Electrical enclosures – Waterproof junction boxes, control panels, and other outdoor electrical boxes are sealed using T rubber gaskets. They exclude moisture from sensitive components.
- Chemical systems – T shaped seals contain corrosive liquids in plating equipment, chemical baths, pumps, and pipelines. Special rubber compounds resist degradation.
- Food processing – Sanitary seals prevent product leakage and intrusion of contaminants on food processing equipment. FDA-approved materials are used.
- Appliances – Refrigerators, freezers, washers, and other appliances use T seals to block airflow and contain refrigerants and fluids. They seal out moisture in humid environments.
- Medical devices – Seals on medical diagnostic equipment, sterilizers, and more prevent fluids and contaminants from reaching interior components.
- Doors and windows – T strips provide inexpensive, long-lasting weatherstripping for doors and sliding windows. They stop drafts, noise, and dirt.
- Transportation – Cars, trucks, trailers, and RVs are sealed against noise, dust, and weather with T shaped sealing strips around doors, hatches, and closures.
Selecting The Best T Seal For Your Application
Start by determining the dimensions of the slot that will retain the T anchor leg. Measure its depth and thickness. Then select a T rubber seal that matches closely without exceeding slot dimensions. Allow 10-20% compression of the flange thickness for an optimal seal.
Consider the seal material needed for temperature resistance, chemical compatibility and other requirements. Silicone, nitrile, EPDM, and fluorocarbon rubbers are common options. Also determine required seal hardness: Soft (20-50 Shore A) for conformability, medium (50-70 Shore A) for performance/cost balance, or hard (70-90 Shore A) for precise dimensional stability.
Work with your sealing supplier to identify the optimal T shaped rubber seal strip profile, material, and hardness for your application. With the right T seal selected and properly installed, you can count on lasting protection against leaks, contamination, and other problems caused by inadequate sealing. Evaluate T shaped sealing strips for your next project.